February 6, 2007
With one to three inches of snow expected in Central Virginia, road crews and school systems are preparing for a long night.
The heaviest snow is expected to fall between 10 p.m. and 4 a.m. That means VDOT crews and school spotter will be hitting the roads, one to control the snow, the other to monitor it.
As the first snowflakes began to fall, VDOT was already gearing up to hit the roads.
"The key is to try and get your treatment down prior to the snow falling and frozen precipitation bonding with the roadways," said VDOT's Darin Simpson.
Crews began work at 8 p.m. this evening, loading salt and making sure all of the equipment was in working order. Once the precip started, 30 trucks took to the roads to begin spreading chemicals.
"Our goal is just to make sure we stay ahead of this storm and we try to have the roads in acceptable operating order for the morning commute," Simpson said.
"We have to make the call on all of our roads so if I have problems in one area and not in another, I still have to worry about getting children to school safely," said Fluvanna County School Superintendent Dr. Thomas Smith.
Fluvanna County Schools will be out around 4:30 a.m. tomorrow morning surveying the conditions of the roadways. Officials have already canceled school three times this year for inclement weather, however Superintendent Smith says that does not factor into the decision making process.
"We don't make decisions on whether we have to make it up or not. We make all of our decisions based on student safety," he said.
Now depending on the amount of accumulation, VDOT says don't expect black pavement for the morning commute. If you see a brown slushy mess, that is supposed to be the case. That means the chemicals are mixing with the snow and once it gets to a certain point, crews will plow the roads.